What is Discovery?
Discovery is the process by which opposing sides in a court case exchange evidence. A defendant's right to receive criminal evidence is guaranteed by the Sixth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. The legal procedures and requirements for discovery are outlined in Rule 16 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure and Rule 16 of the Ohio Rules of Criminal Procedure. In the landmark 1963 case, Brady v. Maryland, the United States Supreme Court held that it is a violation of a defendant's constitutional right to due process for a prosecutor to withhold evidence that is material to the case.
What is Included in Discovery?
In criminal cases, discovery often includes documents such as police reports, witness statements, search warrants, medical records, and financial records. Discovery also often encompasses videos and audio recordings like surveillance footage, interrogations, phone calls, and police cruiser/body camera footage. In criminal cases, the majority of discovery is typically supplied by the prosecutor to the defendant. However, both sides are required to provide all evidence that they anticipate using at trial.
Why is Discovery Important?
Discovery is among the most important stages in a criminal case. The information that is reveled during this process can make or break a case. The exchange of discovery can lead to a case being resolved, particularly if it contains facts that are favorable to the defendant.
It is crucial for all evidence to be thoroughly analyzed and used to the client's best advantage.
Prosecutors do not always provide full discovery as required by law, which happens for a variety of reasons. Sometimes prosecutors fail to provide certain documents because they mistakenly believe that certain discovery is not applicable to the discovery rule. Another reason is that law enforcement failed to provide it to the prosecutor. Although it is rare, discovery is sometimes even withheld due to poor intentions of prosecutors. Regardless of the explanation, Attorney Fogt protects the legal rights of his clients by compelling the state to provide full discovery as required by law.
A Winning Discovery Strategy
Attorney Fogt utilizes multiple strategies to ensure that his clients receive all relevant discovery. He is meticulous about filing a motion to preserve evidence, which provides legal notice to the state that no discovery should be destroyed. Sometimes it is necessary to inquire with the state or contact law enforcement agencies directly. It can also be helpful at times to compare files with the prosecutor to confirm they are identical. It is important to consider the facts and circumstances of the case as well. Sometimes after reviewing the available evidence, it becomes apparent that portions of discovery are absent. Attorney Fogt always takes the necessary steps to ensure nothing it omitted from discovery and clients receive everything they are entitled to under law. If you or someone you know is being charged with a criminal offense, contact Fogt Law Office to obtain the highest level of defense representation.
Fogt Law Can Help You
We will be there for you throughout your case. We will protect your legal interests and rights whether you are charged with a serious felony or a low misdemeanor at the Federal, State, or City level. Attorney Fogt practices in Federal Court and all over the State of Ohio including, but not limited to Montgomery County, Greene County, Miami County, Warren County, Hamilton County, Clark County, Franklin County. Attorney Fogt also practices in Kettering, Miamisburg, Dayton, Xenia, Fairborn, Springboro, Clark, and Lebanon Municipal Courts as well as others. We have handled hundreds of misdemeanor and felony cases including those with multiple first degree felonies. We can help you!